5 Reasons why you shouldn’t use email for file transfer
Published on March 13, 2020
Of course, we all use email every day. For most of us, sending emails is the primary source of business communication and sharing files with colleagues and external 3rd parties.
However, over the years the security landscape has changed and it’s important to consider and ask ourselves whether we are doing our best to protect the data (and potentially the people it concerns) in our business communications.
As an argument to consider, here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t use email for file transfer:
Are email systems secure enough?
With today’s businesses being scrutinised and questions being raised about their security policies, are email systems really secure enough for transferring sensitive files? Emails are routed over the public internet and any hacker worth his salt can potentially access your files and expose your sensitive data.With employee and company liability being a serious and very realistic risk, we need to ensure that any sensitive files being sent and received are encrypted end to end. Typically, email can’t guarantee this, so as a business you may wish to look into a Secure File Transfer solution
Email transfer can be unreliable, and you have no real control
We’ve all been there – desperately trying to recall an email we’ve sent by mistake. Have you ever had any luck? If you’re sending sensitive data via email and you make a mistake it’s very difficult, if not impossible to recall that email. You’re totally dependant on the person who received your email to allow you to recall the message without reading it or downloading the files.In addition to the lack of control, emails can often get misplaced or your attached file can be considered SPAM by the receiving server.There are limited tracking and control options within email once the message has been sent. This has prompted businesses to look at systems that allow much tighter control, with proof of what happened once received by the recipient.
Large files = slow systems
Email servers aren’t designed to handle large file transfers, and the process of delivering those files can slow down network traffic dramatically. If you’re an IT admin, I’m sure you’ll recognise this pain. This is why email systems are designed with a cap on file sizes.In the best-case scenario, the network temporarily slows down while the large file moves from Inbox to Inbox. In the worst-case scenario, the infrastructure can’t handle the overload and the email server crashes being disastrous for IT, and more crucially disastrous for the business.
Are file sizes getting larger?
As we’re so used to using email for all business communication, its very common for users to do whatever they can to keep using what they’re most comfortable with. It’s really the path of least resistance.It’s not uncommon for people to split the files up which allows them to be sent via their email account and bypass file size limitations. This, of course, comes with its own set of issues:When chunking files and emails it’s very easy to make mistakes from the sender’s point of view. From the recipient’s perspective, it can be even more confusing. For the potential of mistakes at both ends its worth considering whether email is the best tool for this file transfer process.Many Secure File Transfer solutions enable users to utilise their Outlook by securing the process with encryption and eliminating any file size limitations.
Do you have central control or is that the end user’s job?
From an IT perspective, how can the IT department centrally control and manage corporate communication when it comes to sending proprietary information? This becomes extremely difficult when using email for file transfer and typically remains in the hand of the end-user.The fast-paced business world puts us all under pressure occasionally and leaving critical files to the whim of hurried employees under this pressure can be a dangerous game to play.If you, as a business, can implement a Secure File Transfer solution offering central control of a system that allows users to send and receive sensitive files of any size but under set permissions and policies it’s a positive step to eliminating the use of email for file transfer and the security concerns in the process.
AMS are specialists in Secure File Transfer and work with 100’s of businesses to help secure the way they transfer files in and out of the organisation, whilst providing them with a full audit trail, and full control of the process.
Tel: 01202 652070